• Ireri says politicians have been using the settlement scheme division issue as a tool to campaign for votes
• Says they collected the names of 12,243 squatters who genuinely needed land
Embu Council of Elders has urged the national government to divide the disputed Mwea Settlement Scheme afresh without involving politicians.
The scheme has been contentious for a long time, sometimes turning bloody as it happened last year when one person was shot dead by the police and eight others injured. The government subsequently suspended the issuance of title deeds.
Nyangi Ndiiriri Council of Elders, led by chairman Andrew Ireri, yesterday said politicians have been using the settlement scheme division issue as a tool to campaign for votes.
Speaking to the press at their office on Mama Ngina Street in Embu town, the elders asked President Uhuru Kenyatta to have the land distributed again. They said they had given out the names of prospective beneficiaries.
He said they collected the names of 12,243 squatters who genuinely needed land.
Ireri further suggested that about 10,000 acres be set aside for rice irrigation.
“Politicians have made the Mwea Settlement Scheme a business for them to seek votes and this is the reason why they would not like the matter to be solved completely,” Ireri said.
Ireri, who was accompanied by his secretary Patrick Kamwega, said in other parts of the country, land disputes are resolved successfully whene politicians are kept at bay.
He dismissed some elders from the neighbouring Kirinyaga county who have been claiming that part of the scheme belong to the county. The elder said the land belongs to Embu and there is no way outsiders should be involved in its distribution.
Ireri said nobody from Embu interferes in Kirinyaga land matters and the elders should desist from meddling in the affairs of Mwea Settlement Scheme.